Midwest Horse Welfare Foundation, Inc. ----Discussion Forum

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Sadly, Dakota was not working out in his new adoptive home and he is now back at MHWF looking for his new adoptive family.

In his new pasture and with his new pasture mates, Dakota's ego got a little too big and he opted to call himself the leader of his new herd. Being with his mother for most of his life did not give him the skills he needs to be a good heard leader. Because of this, Dakota became aggressive from time to time, especially when being worked with. He would be great most of the time, but every once in a while would become aggressive toward his handler/trainer and would even challenge people in the pasture from time to time. A young girl got hurt and after much work and thought, it was decided that maybe Dakota was better off coming back here, for the safety of the kids that frequent the farm and pasture where he was being kept.

He is looking great, built up some muscle, shed out nicely and was even ridden a few times with no issues or problems. Dakota has been back for a week now and we have simply been watching him to see if we could spot any of his aggression, toward us or the other horses in the pasture. So far we have not seen any issues at all, but he is also quite settled in here and knows this as his home, at least for the past couple of years.

Dakota is once again available for adoption, but is a horse that still needs some work and an experienced and firm rider/handler. He is in excellent shape, sound, healthy and has a great start with lots of time working on the ground and some time under saddle.

Heads up! You have Dakota listed as age 17.
Heather H
I saw him back and read the update. Sorry it didn't work out with Dakota but I'm positive there is someone out there who will have the right set up and skills for this flashy boy. I'm glad Ariel did what was best for the horse and for her and hope another horse comes up for adoption that might work out for her and her boarding facility.

I know Anna is working with Flash. Not sure of her farm set up or time contraints but would a month with Anna be beneficial with Dakota?
Scott: MHWF
Dakota's situation is further proof that it is not always the training or the personality of the horse, many times it is simply the new environment that triggers new behaviors. I personally do not believe that the reason for Dakota's return has anything at to do with his training, the way he was handled while he was gone or anything other than a young horse that was not truly weaned until he was an adult testing his boundaries in his new home. Here he spent a great deal of time, much of it attached to his mother (Elsie). He knows his boundaries and his place in the herd here. When he went to a new home, all of what he thought he knew was challenged and questioned. His return is certainly not his adopter's fault, nor do we feel it is truly his fault. He is a good horse and these situations just happen from time to time....a new place...a new attitude and new boundaries to test. His next home very well may never see any of the behaviors he showed in his last home. That would not surprise us at all. 
Angie P- Holmen
Bummer to see him back. HOWEVER he is an amazing horse, and each person that meets him makes him just a little bit better :) I have serious faith that he will find the right home. I loved having him here and was so sad to bring him back. There were tears involved that day. But it was not fair to him with my life changes. I am willing to vouch that this horse will make someone a dandy someday! :)
UPDATE: 6-4-2014

This past weekend, with all the help and volunteers that came, Dakota got some one on one time with Dana. He did exceptionally well. He stood well to be tacked up and groomed. Stood still to be mounted and did very well under saddle. Walk, trot, canter and back down, stop, back and turn, absolutely no questioning of cues, no confusion, no bucking, rearing or bolting. Dakota is going to make someone a stellar partner!


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Dakota really is an exceptional horse. He's intelligent and very pretty. A smooth ride and more than willing to please. He is a real joy!
Nicki S.
I am in the process of helping a family find a couple of horses. They will be sending in their applications tomorrow.  [smile]

I believe Dakota might be a good fit for one of the girls.  She is 17 and has been riding since she was four.  She is looking for a horse for trail, local county fairs and some "just for fun" games.  

(The other girl is 13 and a beginner so will need a nice, calm beginner horse). 
I live in indiana but I really wanna adopt Dakota he is perfect!
Hello im 12 years old almost 13, I have wanted a horse my WHOLE life. Dakota seems like the perfect horse, I'm currently saving up the money to own and take care of a horse. I do hope Dakota is still there by the time I save up enough money! I've ridden before at a camp like five times on trail, and in arenas. I absolutely love horses! And my mom said if I can save up the money and by the time I get the money we will see where we are, so any horse updates I wish that you would send to my email please. Thank you!
Hi *Don't Want To Do My Real Name*,,, I sure hope that you can SAVE up and be able to get the horse that you will need. Sounds like you already have your mind made up, but in TIME you will have that wonderful horse FRIEND. Good Luck
I'm curious if Dakota is still available or if he has been re-homed? I might be interested. I broke out my Arab that I have now and will soon be looking for another horse. 
Nicole G.
I just read all of Dakotas past history. It is amazing to see how far he has come! I am definitely going to keep him in mind when I look for a new horse this spring!
He is so handsome. I can't believe he is still there. This boy is an athlete with looks and a I don't know him but if he is as intelligent as his eyes reveal, someone will have hit the trifecta with Dakota. Wish I could be the lucky one.
Diana S.
What is the process of moving a horse to another location?  My daughter has been riding for 10 years and loves the look of Dakota.  We currently live in SW Louisiana and I have looked into some stables where we can board a horse in anticipation of getting one but we don't have a horse trailer available.  The stables in Georgia where she used to take lessons did some rescues and I know they had a network that kind of moved the horses around the country.  Do you have something like that in place?
Hi Diana, The process of adopting a horse from this program starts with an approved application and requires a potential adopter come to the farm to meet the horse they are interested in so that we can all figure out if it's a good match. If you need help finding a horse rescue and adoption program closer to where you live, I would be happy to help you with that.
Diana S.
Hi Karen, I would love to find a rescue group nearby.  We live in Lake Charles, Louisiana.  Although, my daughter has fallen in love with Dakota's pictures, I don't like the idea of trying to get him from there to here.
Susan H.
Just wondering is Dakota registered?
No, Dakota is not registered.  
It's been too long since an update on Dakota.  

I have extremely exciting news to share about Dakota!  As you can tell from reading through Dakota's thread, he really needs some steady work and with someone who can really understand him.  Between just Scott and I, we just do not have the time ourselves to put into Dakota's training, and it is extremely hard to find an adopter who wants to put in the work, or feels qualified to do so.  Now enter Alyssa into the story.  Alyssa adopted Storm, and you can see all of the great things she has done with him.  Storm went from kind of a sassy pants to a now kid-safe horse that everyone adores.  Alyssa also put training on Elsie (Dakota's mother) and made her adoptable, and then Elsie went on to find a great adoptive home.  Alyssa has once again stepped up and offered to come and get Dakota and keep him for a couple of months to really get his training going and make him one adoptable boy!  We are so, so excited about this and eternally grateful for Alyssa as well.  Alyssa will come and get Dakota on about May 15th and begin working with him.  He has a few similarities to Elsie, who Alyssa did such a wonderful job with, so I know she is going to do a great job with Dakota too.  

Please everyone, take a second to thank Alyssa for this.  This is a really big deal and helps so much!  

Alyssa boards her horses, and the boarding stable has confirmed that they are going to let Dakota come in on around May 15th for Alyssa to work with him for 2 months.  The board is $235.00 per month, and we figure we would like to keep him with Alyssa for 2 months, so the total board would be $470.00.  Alyssa is going to do this training absolutely for free.  We will need to pay the board for Dakota, and if anyone feels like helping out with this $470.00 boarding fee, we would be more than thrilled with that.  (you can mail in a donation or use PayPal from anywhere on the website and just note what it is for)

Thank you all, and we really look forward to this adventure with Dakota and Alyssa!  
Sue J

Alyssa you rock! Count me in for a donation. I think this is so nice of you especially taking this on with a new baby. Good luck and can't wait to read the updates!
Such wonderful news!  Thank you very much Alyssa!!  Given your talents to bring out the best in the horses you work with, I am absolutely certain this will ensure Dakota the foundation he needs to find his forever home [smile] 
I am really looking forward to spending time working with Dakota. I do have high hopes for him, but will take everything at his pace. I will make sure to keep everyone updated with his progress like I did for Elsie!
That's great news! Sending something toward Dakota's board!
Diane B
Alyssa, you are wonderful!  Thank you for helping out Dakota!
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